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Disappointment at Ryanair decision

February 21, 2012 6:42 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Ryanair has announced that it will axe five routes operating from Edinburgh Airport, saying it is too expensive to operate out of the capital.

Mike Crockart MPMike Crockart MPThe budget airline currently runs 40 routes from Edinburgh but from April they are reducing traffic by 15% - a reduction of 300,000 passengers.

The routes being axed are Berlin, Malmo, Murcia, Ibiza and Tallinn.

Commenting on the announcement, Edinburgh's Liberal Democrat MP, Mike Crockart said:

"It is hugely disappointing that Ryanair has decided to cut five routes - two of which are currently operating with the remaining three due to commence this summer - from our capital's airport. This is bad news for tourism, business and of course passenger choice.

"I understand that negotiations between Edinburgh Airport and Ryanair were extensive but that common ground could not be found on some points. I think BAA Edinburgh is right to say that Ryanair has to operate on the same basis as its other carriers.

"There is no doubt that Ryanair's decision comes at an uncertain time for the airport as it tries to attract buyers; but I know that the airport has managed to reach mutually beneficial long term agreements with a number of other carriers to secures their future at Edinburgh's airport.

"Ryanair has warned that the cuts will have a knock-on effect of 300 job losses in the capital. I know that there is some dispute over this number and that the airport is seeking clarification on this. BAA employs 485 staff at Edinburgh Airport and Ryanair has given an assurance that none of its staff will be out of work. I am therefore unsure of where the figure of 300 has come from. Nevertheless, it is an anxious time for staff and I urge BAA Edinburgh and Ryanair to do all they can to prevent job losses.

"Michael O'Leary, Chief Executive of Ryan Air is in Parliament today to address the All Party Aviation Group. I plan to attend that meeting and speak to Mr O'Leary."